Deep in London's filthy, dangerous slums, Victorians transacted their most secret and shameful business. For a price, a man could procure whatever he wanted, but it happened now and then that the price he paid was his life. Now, in sunless Water Lane, respected solicitor Leighton Duff lies dead, kicked and beaten to death. Beside him lies the barely living body of his son, Rhys. The police cannot fathom these brutal assaults, until shrewd investigator William Monk uncovers a connection between them and a series of rapes and beatings of local prostitutes. Then it begins to seem shockingly clear that young Rhys Duff must have killed his own father. In a heartstopping courtroom drama, the Crown's case against Rhys Duff, accused of patricide, begins its inexorable unfolding.